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Thursday, July 21, 2011
Abby goes home again

By Stacy Title

Women's soccer: Abby Wambach drew a record-breaking crowd of 15,404 for her first WPS game after Team USA's World Cup run -- in her hometown of Rochester, N.Y. Our favorite header sat on the bench while her magicJack and the Western New York Flash took to the field. (The Flash won 3-1.) At halftime, with fans chanting "Abby, Abby, Abby!", she picked up a microphone and walked to the midfield to explain why she wasn't playing. "I hope I didn't disappoint too many people tonight, but my body really needed a rest," Wambach said. "Honestly, I'm humbled." Talk about a truly healthy ego.

Golf: On Wednesday, Tiger Woods fired Steve Williams, his longtime caddie with whom he won 13 majors and massive amounts of prize money -- to the ca-ching of $94,728,667. (Williams, at five percent, earned a mere $4,736,433). Williams was shocked when he learned of the firing two weeks ago. He and Tiger both held off announcing the news until after the Open Championship, in deference to Adam Scott, who Williams was caddying for and will now work for permanently. Caddie gone. Wife gone. Tiger's stripped out the old. Who will be the new?

NFL: Indianapolis Colts QB Peyton Manning will reportedly miss the beginning of training camp because he's still recovering from neck surgery. According to the Indianapolis Star, it is unknown how much of the camp Manning might miss. Ouch. And get this: Because of the lockout, the team's medical staff hasn't even talked to Manning! Bet that's a little frustrating -- trying to guess how your star quarterback is feeling after major surgery! Manning's not the only one who's going to be feeling the pain.

Side note: Michael Vick picked up another lucrative endorsement, following his signing with Nike last week. The vitamin company, Fuse Science, "has a game-changing technology." I don't know. I'm still not convinced he's really a changed man.

MLB: The Angels put a stop to the Rangers' 12-game winning streak with a six-run sixth inning and won 9-8 Wednesday. ... The Dodgers finally beat the Giants 1-0 (after losing six straight to San Francisco!), thanks to winning the pitchers' duel between Clayton Kershaw and Tim Lincecum. (Kershaw has the lowest ERA against the world champions and also beat Lincecum on Opening Day.) ... Rookie pitcher Vance Worley dominated the Cubs, leading the Phillies to a 9-1 victory.

College football: The Ivy League announced plans to suspend football players for intentional head hits and limit full-contact practices to twice a week in an attempt to minimize concussions and other serious head injuries. Let's see if the rest of the colleges follow suit. Given what we know about the debilitating nature of these injuries, and the long-term consequences, we certainly hope they do.